The Siloam Springs Museum places a premium on accuracy in all of its publications. As such, the original story posted here on February 22 has been retracted. The featured photo for that week showed a woman standing behind a counter in a cafe. The museum's electronic record of the photograph wrongly identified it as the inside of Pat's Cafe when the photo actually shows the inside of a cafe run by Bess Whipple. The reason for this error goes back to unclear handwriting on the original accession record from 1973. Three photos were accessioned at the same time, and the photo descriptions were all in the same paragraph. This caused the descriptions for three different photos to be placed into the record for one photograph in the first digital version years ago. Therefore, the author, Chuck McClary, published the following incorrect information as either factual or likely: 1) The featured photo depicted the inside of Pat's Cafe, located in Twin Springs Park; 2) the human subject of the photograph is likely Pat (it is actually Bess Whipple); 3) the building which housed Pat's Cafe was erected in 1887 (this was part of the original record, and it is unclear to which building this date refers). The rest of the article spoke of the businesses in Twin Springs Park, based on the fact that Pat's Cafe was located in that area. However, according to Maggie Aldridge Smith's book, Hico, a Heritage: Siloam Springs History (page 414), the actual subject of the photograph, Bess Whipple's cafe, was near the post office, not in Twin Springs Park. This information renders the premise of the remainder of the article irrelevant. As such, the rest of the article has also been removed.
The pictures from the article remain for your enjoyment. I will ensure that future posts to this publication display the utmost accuracy.
Written by Chuck McClary